Fresh Eelam tangle faces TESO meet
By Express News Service - CHENNAI
11th August 2012 08:00 AM
Barely two days ahead of the international ‘Eelam Tamil Rights Protection Conference’ organised by the Tamil Eelam Supporters Organisation (TESO) — recently revived by DMK chief M Karunanidhi — the outfit found itself in a web of troubles over nomenclature and site on Friday.
First, the Manmohan Singh government, of which the DMK is an ally, flung a spanner at the event’s wheels by directing TESO to delete the word ‘Eelam’ from the title of the conference.
Next, the State government told the Madras High Court that it cannot permit holding the event at the YMCA Grounds in Royapettah as the venue does not have the capacity to accommodate the DMK’s estimated one lakh participants. Taken together, the meet acquired an element of uncertainty.
In its letter to TESO secretary Hasan Mohammed Jinnah, who had sought clearance for the conference, the External Affairs Ministry said: “This Ministry has no objection from political angle, for the proposed international conference, with foreign participants, with the proviso that “Eelam” may be dropped from the title of the conference, and subject to clearance of Ministry of Home Affairs and other competent authorities.”
In Chennai, though the High Court did not pass any order against the conference, it put the ball in the City Police Commissioner’s court, asking him to take the final call.
However, Karunanidhi kept his cool and visited the meet venue to oversee the arrangements. He also reiterated that the conference would be held as scheduled, saying he was confident about getting the police’s green light.
“If not, we will transform the stumbling blocks into stepping stones,” he said, indicating that TESO could approach the Supreme Court if needed.
Karunanidhi claimed he had not received any communication from the Centre directing the dropping of ‘Eelam’ from the conference nomenclature. Karunanidhi said no one could issue such a direction as the term had been in vogue since time immemorial.
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